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I LOVE Nettles.
One the first wild foods and medicine in the year nettles are beautiful and nourishing after the winter. Full of nutrients , immune enhancing and cleansing properties this plant is well worth getting to know. Study it, be on the look out for a patch and take advantage of this natures gift in early spring. Nettle is considered a tonic and safe to use on a daily basis and some benefits will first show after continuous use over some time. You can eat them. Use them for tea. Take it as tincture and some use the infused oil as a base for pain relieving salves.
Use them in food as you would any greens. Blanch and eat flavored with olive oil, garlic, braggs and a good vinagre. Make a cream of Nettle soup. Ad to stews, meat or vegetarian and it will add umpf and much nourishment. Ohh and not to forget ….Nettle lasagna and I think I have to try making Nettle enchiladas one of these days.
Replenish tired adrenals with a strong brew of the nettle tops. Steep a handful of fresh or 1/4 cup of dried nettles for half an hour in 1 liter of water and drink it all. Try this daily for a week or even better two and let me know how you feel. You could make this a daily habit long term with great benefit.
Harvest the tops while the plant is still little and definitely before going into seed. As they mature and seed they are considered potentially harmful. The seeds themselves are considered a super-food as well but that is a whole other topic.
Connect to the plant and feel into whether it is willing to share itself with you. Make sure the patch is in a unpolluted area away from the road. If you feel it is a yes go ahead . Use gloves and a scissor and carefully snip the tops and gather what you need. If you harvest more than you will use today spread on a screen or something similar and dry them to use as tea or powdered in food or smoothies. Or harvest them in bunches and hang to dry. You may get stung which can be uncomfortable but it wont harm you . Some actually use the stinging as a stimulant of the immune system and it is known to soothe arthritic pains.
If you do not come across a place to harvest yourself you will easily and affordable find this herb in any well-stocked herb store.
Enjoy. In as many ways as possible!